Moist, delicious macaroon cookies smothered in pumpkin-spiced white chocolate and crunchy pecans. A little taste of fall....in one delicious bite!
So I've come to the conclusion that life is really trying to teach me a lesson....particularly in the area of child rearing, and specifically in the area of other people's opinions of my child rearing. Ever since Ellia was a baby, I have had an uncanny ability to attract the opinions and advice of others....especially people I don't know, and most often in grocery stores! The first time it happened, Ellia was just a couple months old and very colicky....and I had stopped to pick up a few things we desperately needed. Because she was colicky, I had her strapped to my chest in a Baby Bjorn, and because it was 90-some degrees out, I had her in a one piece outfit with no socks. Those were my first....and second....mistakes!
As we walked through the grocery store and Ellia screamed (because that's what colicky babies do, regardless of when it is or where you are) I was suddenly stopped by a middle aged woman who told me, point blank, that I should NOT have my baby at the grocery store. She was a nurse, she said.....so she knew these things. Not only should I not have her at the grocery store, I should not have her arms and legs exposed....AND....the reason she was crying was because I didn't have any socks on her! "She's freezing!" she told me, "No wonder she's screaming!" And went on to lecture me for several more minutes until I finally had to walk away.....to keep from absolutely losing it.
Then there was the time I was at the grocery store with all three kids, and the express lane opened up. Despite the fact that I had too many groceries to be "express", the cashier invited me into the lane. And as I started unloading my cart, wouldn't you know, a woman shows up behind me who simply CAN NOT believe that I am in the express lane! And with all those kids! After a few rude comments and dirty glances at my kids, with utter disgust, she starts angrily unloading my groceries for me! As if I'm not doing it quickly enough for her....as if I clearly can't handle grocery shopping AND children! It was all I could do to keep from smacking her hand mid-air as it held on to my bag of tortilla chips....but I didn't....because I didn't want to cause more of a scene that I clearly already had!
More recently, there was the time....again, at the grocery store....when I made the mistake of letting Ellia return our cart by herself. Instantly, I was being cornered by an older man who let me know just how careless and irresponsible I was being by letting my young daughter out of my sight, even for a minute. "How would you feel if you never saw her again?" he asked. "Because all it takes is a minute." And, true to form, that lecture lasted a solid few minutes before I finally called it quits.....because, truthfully, I had had enough! Seriously.....I've had enough!!
But....apparently I haven't learned my lesson just yet....because just last night, when we were out to dinner to celebrate Jorden's birthday with his family, the woman across from us had something to say, too! Granted, the kids were with their cousins and everyone was getting a little wild (especially after the employees brought them each a balloon sword), but still.....they're just kids! After about 37 dirty looks, rude comments, and eye rolls in our direction, she finally turned to the rest of her table and, loud enough for us to hear, asked, "Are they EVER going to go HOME???"
Now. It is clearly up to me how much I am going to let the opinions of people I don't even know bother me! But the truth is....IT BOTHERS ME!! Every time it happens I can feel my blood start to boil and it is all I can do to maintain a level head. At the root of it, I know the reason it bothers me so much is because it always makes me wonder if those other people are right....if I should, in fact, be doing things differently! I question myself A LOT as a mom, and anytime someone else questions my parenting, it touches on my own insecurities and uncertainties.
I wish I could say I know how to change that....but the truth is I don't. What I DO know is that it feels great to have things I KNOW I'm doing well....things I know I'm doing right! Like making sure my kids get enough sleep, making sure they don't spend hours in front of a screen, making sure they eat foods that are good for them, through and through. Which brings me to these delicious little treats I'm sharing with you today. I was recently introduced to an awesome company called Immaculate Baking, a small company that offers a range of refrigerated dough made from natural, non-GMO ingredients. I have fallen in love with the company, their philosophy, and their products. And, like all refrigerated dough, I love the fact that it allows me to make delicious treats in a fraction of the time! Immaculate Baking recently introduced this amazing Coconut Macaroon cookie dough to their line-up, which inspired me to make these Pumpkin Pecan Spice Macaroons.
Every now and then, it's nice to have something you KNOW you can feel good about....and even nicer when it tastes good, too.
Pumpkin Pecan Spice Macaroons
1 (14 oz.) package Coconut Macaroon cookie dough (makes 12)
6 oz. white chocolate coating (white chocolate chips or CandiQuik)
¾ tsp. pumpkin pie spice
⅓ c. ground pecans
12 pecan halves
1. Bake cookies according to package instructions. Cool completely.
2. Melt white chocolate over low heat, stirring constantly. Add pumpkin pie spice and stir to combine.
3. Dip cooled macaroons into spiced white chocolate approx. halfway, then dip in ground pecans.
4. Top each cookie with a dollop of the white chocolate mixture and a pecan half.
*Can also be made with homemade coconut macaroons (recipe here)